Minimising Dichotomies, Optimising Priorities
What are we “on” about? We are on about GOD – His name, kingdom, will (Matthew 6:9). More precisely, we are on about JESUS because He is God’s Son sent to save us. God has sent Jesus to put the world on notice: It is now under God’s new management! Because Jesus is King, He invites us to a new God-centred world where Jesus Christ rules. This is ARPC’s loftiest concern: To be Christ-like people!
1. ARPC is “A Word and Spirit Community”, not a Word vs Spirit people
Some call Evangelicals “thinking” believers. Others call Charismatics “feeling” Christians.The former focuses on the “head”, while the latter emphasizes the “heart”. One delights in teaching as its main activity. The other delights in singing. We find no such divide in the Bible. Indeed, the sword of the Spirit is God’s Word! So we will both nurture the “mind of Christ” and bear the “fruit of the Spirit”. So faithful teaching and heartfelt singing can characterise our lives.
2. ARPC is “A Ministering Community”, not a mini vs mega community
Some like the bustle of mega churches. Others prefer the huddle of home churches. The debate about size can be distracting. The Bible presents a wholesome picture. At times, it is mega (3000 in Acts 2:41). At others, it is “mini church” in a home. Sometimes, it is “ultra mini” – person to person (Philip and the eunuch in Acts 8). The point not to miss is this: God’s work can be expressed in all three settings! In short, the substance – the MINISTRY of God’s Word in love – is the key, not size!
Indeed, “all-size” and “all-age” churches better affirm our God-given natures. “All-size” church? God made us with both a personal yet communal side. We can be part of big gatherings, belong to small groups yet enjoy personal ministries. “All-age” church? God made us to live and love both those older and younger to us! “All-place” church? God meant the church to be local yet global in its reach. At ARPC, we are an “all-size”, “all-age” and “all-place” community! We believe that we can “grow bigger yet grow closer” simultaneously.
3. ARPC is both “A Proclamation and Demonstration Community”
Although our lives or testimonies do not by themselves “save” anyone…. Yet, bad testimony dishonors God and discredits gospel proclamation. So we will teach our people to live radically holy or different lives because of Jesus. We believe that we can both share and show God’s love in Godly living or social action.
4. ARPC is both “A Sunday and Everyday Community”
We pray all that we learn together on the weekends will bear fruit … every day! It is wrong to domesticate God and leave Him out of our daily lives.
5. ARPC is “A Program for People Community”
We believe in teaching our people for maturity. Bible literacy for Christlike maturity. In that sense, all our programs are for people – to tell of Jesus and become like Jesus. Our Discipleship Groups, Training Pathways, Leaders Training, Annual Camps, Equip Conferences and Centre of Preaching are all to equip God’s people to maturity. Last but not least, we are a Praying People who walk by God’s Spirit. This recognizes our total vulnerability to sin yet total dependence upon God.